fairymascot asked: is the 12 kingdoms anime good, too? it sounds rad, but i rarely have the attention span for manga these days. u n u
The anime is good and a mostly faithful adaptation! It adds a kind of needless subplot by having two of Yoko’s classmates come to the kingdoms with her at first, including this annoying guy she has a crush on, which wasn”t in the book and might bother you- but he literally falls out of the plot about six episodes in and she gets over him pretty quickly after as part of her character development. He only comes back in an antagonist capacity later on. The stuff with Sugimoto (the girl who came with her along with him) is also a little awkward because it wasn’t in the book, but yeah, that stuff is the only part that’s really off about the adaption.
The original 12k is actually novels, not a manga, but I imagine that would be even harder on the attention span haha.
I’ll even vote for your stuff in exchange!!!
Vote heeeere: The Twelve Kingdoms. Go to page 6.
THE TWELVE KINGDOMS by Fuyumi Ono
Absolutely the best fantasy series I have read, and this is from a girl who survived her childhood thanks to Harry Potter. Written by a Japanese woman. Out of print in the US, but full English translations are also available online thanks to Eugene Woodbury.
The most prominent narrative centers around Yoko Nakajima, a submissive sixteen year old girl who lives to please those around her, reared by her controlling father to believe a very narrow idea of what girls should be. Everything changed for Yoko was chased by the demons into the fantastical world of the twelve kingdoms, separated from her mysterious protector and stranded. The world of the Twelve Kingdoms is filled with strange customs and dangerous creatures, and in some places the outsiders that blow in from Japan and China aren’t welcomed due to the calamity caused by the storms that blow them in. This meek schoolgirl who built her life around serving others now has only herself to count on, and she is going to have to find out who she is and what she’s really made of if she wants to survive.
The story deals with the way gender roles can damage people, classism, fantastic racism, corruption, politics, culture clashes and all kinds of stuff so spectacularly, and Yoko goes through the most amazing character development I have ever seen. The worldbuilding is phenomenal, bringing us this very flawed but very fascinating fantasy world that’s based on Eastern rather than Western mythology.
The series is unfinished, but the character arcs of Yoko and two other phenomenal female characters are wrapped up pretty satisfactorily in the third book.